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I have been asked by a friend to refinish a table that is clearly not an antique. The table top appears to be veneer on particleboard which I may be able to deal with.

My concern is that the edges of the table appear to be some sort of compressed fibre. I do not have spray capability. I am trying to assess if these table edges can be stained or dyed.

Any feedback would be appreciated.

Thanks.

Gary
 

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There is no reason the table couldn't be refinished. Refinishing isn't a winter sport though. You really need the temperature near 90 degrees to prevent having to soak the finish too long to get the finish off. Since the core is mdf I would strip it with Kleen Strip paint and varnish remover and rinse it with lacquer thinner. Once sanded, and be very sparing with the sanding, I would stain the table top with a water based stain to prevent the mdf edges from turning too dark. After staining, the speckles are either paint or a glaze which you can put back on by dipping a toothbrush in the paint or glaze and rub your thumb over the bristles flicking it on the table. You should practice this on a piece of scrap be before trying it on the table. Just apply it a little at a time so you can go back and add some more to thinner spots in order to get it more uniform. Once this step is completed you can seal the wood and finish with the finish of your choice. Be sure to let the flyspeck dry very good before finishing over it. The first coat of finish brush it on as quick and light as possible so you don't remove them or make streaks out of them. Once the first coat of finish is dry you should then be able to put a normal coat of finish on.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
There is no reason the table couldn't be refinished. Refinishing isn't a winter sport though. You really need the temperature near 90 degrees to prevent having to soak the finish too long to get the finish off. Since the core is mdf I would strip it with Kleen Strip paint and varnish remover and rinse it with lacquer thinner. Once sanded, and be very sparing with the sanding, I would stain the table top with a water based stain to prevent the mdf edges from turning too dark. After staining, the speckles are either paint or a glaze which you can put back on by dipping a toothbrush in the paint or glaze and rub your thumb over the bristles flicking it on the table. You should practice this on a piece of scrap be before trying it on the table. Just apply it a little at a time so you can go back and add some more to thinner spots in order to get it more uniform. Once this step is completed you can seal the wood and finish with the finish of your choice. Be sure to let the flyspeck dry very good before finishing over it. The first coat of finish brush it on as quick and light as possible so you don't remove them or make streaks out of them. Once the first coat of finish is dry you should then be able to put a normal coat of finish on.
Thanks Steve. You have given me some hope that I may be able to pull this off. I had not even thought about how to duplicate the speckles. Great advice on those.

Your comment about the temperature is interesting given where I live in Canada just across the border from northern Michigan. The wind chill is currently -32C. Since C and F scales cross at -40 it is very close to -32F out there. So any activity will be in the basement workshop.

Gary
 

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That doesn't look like veneer, looks more like a photo print. I can't blow up your pic to see the edge clearly but there is a technique where they apply a very thin photo print on the top surface, wipe a glaze like stain on the edges and top coat it all. Using a stripper could degrade the MDF leaving you with a soggy mess. Painting the table is an option but you can't strip it, if it's what I think it is. See if you can find a manufacturers name someplace, like Bush Industries. They are well know for this type of furniture. The photo print is thinner than Saran wrap and it's a plastic like membrane. Even ordinary paints may not adhere. Similar to a process called flexography.
 

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That doesn't look like veneer, looks more like a photo print. I can't blow up your pic to see the edge clearly but there is a technique where they apply a very thin photo print on the top surface, wipe a glaze like stain on the edges and top coat it all. Using a stripper could degrade the MDF leaving you with a soggy mess. Painting the table is an option but you can't strip it, if it's what I think it is. See if you can find a manufacturers name someplace, like Bush Industries. They are well know for this type of furniture. The photo print is thinner than Saran wrap and it's a plastic like membrane. Even ordinary paints may not adhere. Similar to a process called flexography.
+1. :yes: I agree. It doesn't look like veneer to me either.






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Thanks Steve. You have given me some hope that I may be able to pull this off. I had not even thought about how to duplicate the speckles. Great advice on those.

Your comment about the temperature is interesting given where I live in Canada just across the border from northern Michigan. The wind chill is currently -32C. Since C and F scales cross at -40 it is very close to -32F out there. So any activity will be in the basement workshop.

Gary
MDF isn't happy getting wet with anything. I think you will have problems with the wood or veneer if you soak it for a long time with remover due to the cold weather. I think the stripping process needs to go as quick as possible.

Keep in mind that the main ingredient in paint and varnish remover is methylene chloride. It is a cancer causing agent which is extremely unhealthy to breathe. Unless you have a air supplied respirator it won't help you in your basement. The agent will go straight through a paint spray respirator like it was a paper mask. Also the charcoal filter in the respirator will hold and retain the agent so you would have to dispose of the charcoal canisters after each use. The remover is also very flammable and may be ignited by your heating system.
 

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MDF isn't happy getting wet with anything. I think you will have problems with the wood or veneer if you soak it for a long time with remover due to the cold weather. I think the stripping process needs to go as quick as possible.

Keep in mind that the main ingredient in paint and varnish remover is methylene chloride. It is a cancer causing agent which is extremely unhealthy to breathe. Unless you have a air supplied respirator it won't help you in your basement. The agent will go straight through a paint spray respirator like it was a paper mask. Also the charcoal filter in the respirator will hold and retain the agent so you would have to dispose of the charcoal canisters after each use. The remover is also very flammable and may be ignited by your heating system.
Don't you think he should determine if it's veneer or not?




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Discussion Starter #12
That doesn't look like veneer, looks more like a photo print. I can't blow up your pic to see the edge clearly but there is a technique where they apply a very thin photo print on the top surface, wipe a glaze like stain on the edges and top coat it all. Using a stripper could degrade the MDF leaving you with a soggy mess. Painting the table is an option but you can't strip it, if it's what I think it is. See if you can find a manufacturers name someplace, like Bush Industries. They are well know for this type of furniture. The photo print is thinner than Saran wrap and it's a plastic like membrane. Even ordinary paints may not adhere. Similar to a process called flexography.
Hammer1, I don't see any manufacturer's information anywhere. If this is what you think it is then for sure I will stay away from it.

I am going to do a small test on the underside of one edge to see if I can get stain to look okay. If not then I will move one.

Thanks.

Gary
 

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Discussion Starter #13
MDF isn't happy getting wet with anything. I think you will have problems with the wood or veneer if you soak it for a long time with remover due to the cold weather. I think the stripping process needs to go as quick as possible.

Keep in mind that the main ingredient in paint and varnish remover is methylene chloride. It is a cancer causing agent which is extremely unhealthy to breathe. Unless you have a air supplied respirator it won't help you in your basement. The agent will go straight through a paint spray respirator like it was a paper mask. Also the charcoal filter in the respirator will hold and retain the agent so you would have to dispose of the charcoal canisters after each use. The remover is also very flammable and may be ignited by your heating system.

Steve thanks for the additional input. It sure sounds like I may not be able to do this given the extreme toxicity of the stripper.

Gary
 

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Thanks Steve. You have given me some hope that I may be able to pull this off. I had not even thought about how to duplicate the speckles. Great advice on those.

Your comment about the temperature is interesting given where I live in Canada just across the border from northern Michigan. The wind chill is currently -32C. Since C and F scales cross at -40 it is very close to -32F out there. So any activity will be in the basement workshop.

Gary
those flex's can be done with a tooth brush and some good old screen , just dip brush is some paint and rub it over the screen and you will see very good result's , that is the way i do it , good luck on the project a good learning experence
 

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Discussion Starter #16
those flex's can be done with a tooth brush and some good old screen , just dip brush is some paint and rub it over the screen and you will see very good result's , that is the way i do it , good luck on the project a good learning experence
Del, this is also nice advice on duplicating the speckles. Thank you.

Gary
 
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